Sunday, June 1, 2014

Food Stadium

An old, previously unpublished blog on the wonder that was the food stadium Sicily and I created for this past Superbowl. Serious World Cup food stadium potential this summer!


Food Stadium

Food stadium. Depending on who you are these two words either strike terror in your heart or fill your soul with bubbles. Either way, these marvels of modern food architecture area paeans to gluttony at the height of sports indulgence, but I like to do things a little differently. For Superbowl XLVIII, I constructed a politically correct, Seahawks-focused stadium complete with gluten-free snacks, plenty of sugary treats and humanely raised chicken wings (well, chickens humanely raised and processed into, among other things, wings). Our veggies were organic, our dips varied, and, with the exception of our “cars,” “bleachers,” and “attendees,” everything was house-made.


I started with a firm base. Every stadium in the NFL has four corners, and ours were green peppers filled with two dips, black olives and sweet fire pickles. Okay, so the olives were from a jar, but the buffalo cheese dip, garlic goat cheese spread, and sweet and spicy bread and butter pickles were 100% my own.

The Field

The field was, of course, guacamole, because more avocados are sold on this day than any other day of the year so it honors a tradition, but also because any other dip that’s green has probably been in your ‘fridge for too long. Sure, you could go spinach, but in mixed company who wants to worry about what is stuck in their teeth? I lined the field with sour cream and was ready for kickoff.

The Stands

Did you know that you can buy both organic crispy rice cereal and organic marshmallows? Welcome to the first level of the stands: crispy rice treats. Piled on some brownies in a stair-step pattern, added a few Kit-Kats for step definition (wouldn’t want any drunken patrons falling into the guac), and I had a stadium constructed on time and under budget. I used mint chips for the fans (Go, Seahawks!), but feel free to use those nasty pumpkin-colored chips you have stashed in the cupboard from two Halloweens ago if you are a Broncos fan. You already made one bad choice; why not make another?

Goal Posts and Players

Pretzels tend to melt in moisture, and the last thing I needed during a clutch 54-yard game-winning field goal was soggy goal posts. I used nitrite-free sausage sticks (sounds a little dirty, but that’s a whole different blog) to construct the uprights and anchored them in cheese, cleverly hidden in the guac of the end zones. John Madden provided inspiration for player design (olive X’s and O’s), but you could use mini carrots with little helmets. If you had that much time on your hands, you could also paint the team logos in each end zone and solve world hunger. Keep it simple.

Tarting the Whole Thing Up

The rest is just beautifying your stadium. We hung the 12th man flag, used broccoli for bushes, added pretzel and potato chips, and made a parking lot out of mini candy bars. Time expired before we could get to the celery stick walkways and carrot stick metal detector/turnstile combos, but that’s in development for next year. Also a cotton candy blimp. Might make the aerial shots a bit clearer.  Our chicken wings didn't make it in time for the big game, but they provided the half-time entertainment, slathered in Carolina barbecue sauce (vinegary tang) and dressed in bleu cheese.

Whether you buy your construction materials or make them yourself, a food stadium is a spectacular twist on a Superbowl feast!

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